Why is everyone so sweet on chocolate?

A great story on Marketplace (APM / NPR) about why chocolate is doing so well, and companies are trying to buy into the business. Below is the transcript:

KAI RYSSDAL: If you’ve been listening to this program, or reading the business pages, you have no doubt heard about the various firms that are trying to buy the candy maker Cadbury. Kraft’s $17-billion bid was too low for the British company, also too high for Kraft’s biggest shareholder Warren Buffett. He said ixnay to the eel-day. So Cadbury board members have reportedly started talking to the folks at Hershey, I imagine trying to gin up a counter-offer there.

Now I like a good candy bar as much as the next guy. But this does seem like a whole lot of fuss about chocolate. Marketplace’s Jeremy Hobson explains all that maneuvering is not as crazy as it sounds.

JEREMY HOBSON: We may be cutting back on houses, cars, electronics and eating out. But chocolate appears to be totally recession proof. The market research firm Mintel says Americans bought about 2.5 percent more chocolate in 2009 than they did in 2008.

MARCIA MOGELONSKY: Chocolate provides a certain comfort, even when times are bad.

Marcia Mogelonsky is a global food and drink analyst at Mintel. She says the real growth is overseas. In India, for instance, chocolate sales grew almost 17 percent as the world plunged into the economic slump.

MOGELONSKY: You know you wouldn’t think of India as a great chocolate country because of the temperature. Chocolate will melt. You can’t have it in the corner store. But what’s been happening as the Indian economy develops, there’s been a growing network of air-conditioned malls opening up across India. And in those air-conditioned malls, you can sell chocolate.

Keeping chocolate cool is not a problem right now here in frigid New York City. I stopped by a chocolate store in Rockefeller Center, and found Evelyn McGrath ogling the window display. She says she’s making less money now, but still eats chocolate every other day.

EVELYN MCGRATH: I don’t know, I just really like chocolate. I like dark chocolate a lot, and they say that it’s healthier for you. If you can eat like the 60 percent dark chocolate like at least once a day, it’s better for your heart or something.

Ahh, the things we tell ourselves.

Kenise Scoop’s not making any excuses. She admits despite the recession, her chocolate-buying habits haven’t changed.

KENISE SCOOP: No, they probably should have, but they haven’t.

HOBSON: Still buying the same amount?

SCOOP: Possibly more, actually.

Scoop’s in good company. Mintel reports chocolate has become a substitute for other items in this recession. As in, forget the diamonds for Valentine’s Day, how about a heart-shaped box of chocolate truffles instead?

In New York, I’m Jeremy Hobson for Marketplace.

Read the transcript or hear the story here.

TasteTV Events include:

This blog from the contributors, producers and correspondents at TasteTV at TasteTV.com. technorati tags:, , , , , , , , , , , , ,

TasteTV and TasteTV.com Chocolate News Updates

Chocorotica Video

… kind of aimed at people with extreme sweet tooths (teeth), not necessarily the artisan chocolate lovers — but whatever! Enjoy

TasteTV and TasteTV.com Chocolate News Updates

White Chocolate Conan O’Brien – video

White Chocolate Conan O’Brien – video

TasteTV and TasteTV.com Chocolate News Updates

Vermeer Dutch Chocolate Cream & Blue Angel Vodka


Vermeer Dutch Chocolate Cream, Blue Angel Vodka join the Los Angeles Luxury Chocolate Salon on October 11th.

TasteTV Events include:

This blog from the contributors, producers and correspondents at TasteTV at TasteTV.com. technorati tags:, , , , , , , , , , , , ,

TasteTV and TasteTV.com Chocolate News Updates

Chocolate Coins Music Video

Chocolate coins and dradels, that’s the theme of this funny hip-hop music video by comedia/rapper Eric Schwartz


Watch Chocolate Coins in Comedy | View More Free Videos Online at Veoh.com

TasteTV Events include:

This blog from the contributors, producers and correspondents at TasteTV at TasteTV.com. technorati tags:, , , , , , , , , , , , ,

TasteTV and TasteTV.com Chocolate News Updates

Simple Luxuries Thrive in Depressed Economy – ie. Chocolate

MSNBC and Entrepreneur.com have identified the truth. People keep eating chocolate during a recession. Even a Great Recession.


Why?


Because they can,

because they need to,

because they can afford at least one bite.


Per writer Amy Reinink:


Simple Luxuries Thrive in Depressed Economy

Beer, chocolate and video games. People find comfort on a tight budget with these recession-proof products.


Chocolate

Davidson Chocolateisnt the only chocolate company to enjoy a recent boom in business. Industry giants like Hersheys and Cadburys have also reported increased profits.


Elliott says Davidsons success stems from keeping the focus on quality, and by creating an atmosphere of luxury at an affordable price point.


If people come to really appreciate the quality of your product, they will see paying $1.35 for a truffle as a good value rather than a splurge, she says.


As soon as customers walk into Davidson Chocolate, they are greeted by a staff member–and by the aroma of the on-site chocolate production.


People just stand there and smell for a few minutes, Elliott says.


Then, whether the customer is buying three pounds of chocolate or three pieces, Elliott says owners and staff strive to create the feeling of, Oh, can we wrap your gift, or get you a gift card, or do anything else to make you feel special?


People have to go grocery shopping, Elliott says. They dont have to come into the store. We want them to feel like theyre being treated.

TasteTV Events include:

This blog from the contributors, producers and correspondents at TasteTV at TasteTV.com. technorati tags:, , , , , , , , , , , , ,

TasteTV and TasteTV.com Chocolate News Updates